Lagos - Commuters on the Ogun/Lagos mass
transit train of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) on Tuesday renewed
their appeal to the corporation’s management to provide security at its Ijoko
Station in Ogun.
The renewed appeal followed Tuesday’s early morning sporadic
shootings by some hoodlums in the area which the passengers and others users of
the station described as dangerous.
An eyewitness, Alhaji Muri Olokun, told the News Agency of
Nigeria (NAN) that it was almost a daily occurrence in the area for hoodlums to
scare away people every early morning.
Olokun said the shooting on Tuesday was, however, heavier
than the previous ones, adding that it left many of the passengers, NRC workers
and sellers to scamper for safety.
"They are usually about five in number and usually start
their shooting at about 5 a.m.
"I think the hoodlums after arriving from their nocturnal
operation always shoot to scare people and get away with their loot,’’ the
Olokun added that the hoodlums usually emerged from an
uncompleted building in the area with arms.
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A NRC official at the station, who pleaded anonymity, told
NAN that it was true that the hoodlums usually shoot every morning but that
they never came near the office.
"However, their shooting this morning was louder than
before and which forced us to lock our offices, while many passengers on queue
for ticket ran away.
"We have a police post around but not yet manned by any
officer. Before, we thought we are not threatened but today’s shooting calls
for something to be done,’’ the official said.
NAN reports that early this month, residents of the area
arranged some security men around the station to check the incessant operation
of the hoodlums.
The security men usually forced passengers coming on
motorcycles to join the train to drop some metres away and trek to the station.
"But the residents had withdrawn the security men and the
hoodlums are back,’’ a woman leaving in the area told NAN anonymously.
The woman said the hoodlums not only rob the residents but
train passengers who usually come to the station early in the morning to join
the train to Lagos.